Synopsis of the Books of the Bible, by John Nelson Darby, [1857-62], at sacred-texts.com
Christ has been introduced, not indeed yet in glory, but associating Himself with the remnant, and suffering even unto death for them. Hence their whole case can be prophetically gone into. And here for the first time we meet the confession of sins. It is not merely positionth at we had from Psalms 3-7; nor the sense of circumstances which Psalms 11-15 gave, founded on Psalms 9, 10; but the whole case of the remnant, as they will feel, entered into. The first word characterizes them: "Unto thee, O Jehovah, will I lift up my soul." The godly man expresses his trust in his God, and prays that he may not be ashamed, but that those may that are willfully wicked. The remnant are distinguished thus in Verse 3 (Psa 25:3). There is the desire to be shown Jehovah's ways, to be taught in His truth, for He was the God of their salvation: they always waited on Him.
Next, Verse 6 (Psa 25:6), he casts himself on what God is in mercy, as He had shown Himself, and pleads that He may not remember Israel's past sins, but himself according to His mercy. He knows Jehovah, that He is good and upright, and will therefore teach sinners in the way. His dealing with them is according to His own nature and character where He works in grace, goodness, and uprightness. This is an all-important point. Next, we get the present character of the remnant: they are the meek of the earth; these Jehovah would guide in judgment. All Jehovah's ways were mercy towards such; and faithfulness to promises and righteousness infallibly marked them. In it we have the fullest confession by the godly man of his own sin, not merely the former sins of Israel. He looks only for mercy, his iniquity is so great, and founds his hope on Jehovah's name. This is exceedingly beautiful. Jehovah's name, as revealed in Israel, had in the previous Verses of this psalm been fully entered into; His ways of mercy and truth in Israel. The answer to this cry, in the effectual work of Christ, though testified of in the prophets, and forming in God's sight the ground-work of all, is not, I apprehend, at this time known by the godly remnant, nor till they look on Him whom they have pierced; but they have the ways of God, His promises, and the abundant declarations and invitations, yea, pleadings, of Jehovah in the prophets, that if their sins had been as scarlet, they should be as white as snow. All this revelation was Jehovah's name to them; and to this they look, something in the state, though not exactly, of the poor woman in the city that was a sinner before she received the Lord's answer of peace.
In Verses 12-14 (Psa 25:12-14) we get the prophetic answer of the Spirit in hope; in Verses 15-21 (Psa 25:15-21), the meek one. He lays his whole case before Jehovah. The great result and true application is seen in the last verse. This psalm lays the whole case of the remnant before Jehovah in the expression to Him of a heart attracted and taught by grace. It is a very full and distinct expression of their place and pleadings before Him, and according to what He is. Some very definite points are brought out: the confession of Israel's past sins, the confession of his own by him who speaks. Mercy is looked to as the only resource. Yet from so gracious a God they can count on His teaching sinners. But these sinners are the meek of the earth who are to inherit it. Integrity of heart characterizes them, and they trust in and wait for Jehovah. Compare with this the incomparable picture of the remnant in the beginning of Luke. The psalm is both beautiful and very fully characteristic.